Sunset bison

Sunset bison
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Thursday, July 04, 2013

Test: using neutral density filter (ND8 for you gear heads) on the Waterville fireworks show

































9 comments:

Anonymous said...

Love the pic's. They look like flowers with the stems.

Marcia said...

Tell me more anout the filter. Beautiful images.

TodMegredy said...

Great stuff, Tom. What did the ND filter do for you?

Tom Parker said...

Tod, the filter reduced light by three stops, which means the really bright spots were dimmed considerably. Fireworks are so bright that they easily blow out the highlights if the shutter is open too long. The filter let me open it pretty much as long as I wanted (within reason) without worrying about it. My keeper rate went from about 40 percent to 95 percent.

Tom Parker said...

Marcia, as I explained to Tod, neutral density filters are used to reduce the amount of light entering the camera's aperture. They're normally used to make waterfalls, rivers and oceans look all creamy and soft while keeping stationary details sharp. For fireworks they reduce the amount of light, too. They also mean longer exposures, say from two to ten seconds, depending, and possibly more. I used an aperture of f8 for Waterville, but for the ones I'll post today from Washington I opened the aperture to f6.5 to let in a little more light. Next year I'll try the same experiment using an ND6 filter, which cuts the light by two stops.

Carol said...

Beautiful images, Tom. Thanks for sharing. The filter is a "keeper."

Tom Parker said...

Thanks, Carol. The filter is indeed a keeper!

shoreacres said...

I don't understand much of the tech talk at all, but I can say these are beautiful images. Fireworks photos are tough, I know. I usually look at them and say, "That's nice". But these are different. And it was interesting what you said about the flowing water. I wonder now if some of the best photos I've seen of mountain streams and waterfalls might have been using the same sort of filter.

In any event, Happy Independence Day! I hope it was a good one for you and Lori.

Tom Parker said...

Linda, ND filters were probably used for those images you referred to. I've done it in the past on a very limited scale but intend to do much more when the opportunity presents itself. Say, a trip to the Gulf to shoot tides...

And happy Independence Day to you!